Sea salt, back by popular demand…

We’ve been driven demented by all the requests, and we do listen. So… sea salt ice cream is going to make a reappearance in our shops for a couple of weeks, starting with this weekend. After that, I think we’ll do a pink peppercorn ice cream for winter. So… if you loved the sea salt, get it while stocks last!

Children’s Book for an Ice Cream Lover?

I just came across this on-line, Dingle, the Helpful Ice Cream Cone Delivery Dog, by Audrey Kinsella. What’s not to like? Dingle, ice cream, and dogs. The author is living with M.S. and it’s a book about someone with a disability accepting help. Seems like a winner to me.

A Few Go Out, a Few Come In

 One of the trickiest parts of our business is the following conflict/contradiction:

People always want new ice cream flavours, but they also hate losing flavours they like.

We’re always asked what’s new, and at the same time we’re asked constantly to bring back ice creams we’ve made, sometimes ten years ago – “Would you ever make more of that licorice and vodka ice cream I loved so much?” Some of the flavours are really best left relegated to the ice cream dust bin of history (in some cases that’s where most of the batch ended up anyway, since so few people liked it). In other cases, we do bring back flavours, such as coffee (below), at least on a temporary basis, if there is enough clamour.

In any case, this is just a lead in to the fact that we’re going to change four flavours very soon, so get them while you can! Two of them (sea salt and burnt caramel) have really resonated with many customers. However, it’s time to freshen things up a bit, so here’s what’s going to happen:

Out: Sea salt, burnt caramel, Kilbeggan whiskey, mango sorbet.

In: Real lavender, caramelised honey, lemon sorbet, coffee.

We hope you’ll enjoy the new flavours, and if you really, really miss the ones we’re removing, let me know…

Looking for Ice Cream Dessert Ideas

 We’re looking for sundae and other ice cream dessert ideas. If you have any suggestions of how we can improve our dessert offerings or create something new and fabulous, please leave a comment below!

It could be anything from the tried and tested to the wild and wacky (recently someone asked we make the following dessert: banana, maple syrup, vanilla ice cream, and streaky bacon).

Thanks a million!

Sweet! Pandora Bell

I came across Pandora Bell‘s salted caramels in Fallon & Byrne when I had salt on the brain and was thinking of making sea salt ice cream. Finding salted caramels in Ireland was a bit of a surprise, and since I munched down the whole lot quickly enough, I didn’t even notice that Pandora Bell is an Irish company.

While they don’t make their own sweets, Pandora Bell does bring in some top confections from around Europe. Besides the seductive caramels, they also have fetching lollies and deliciously old-school honey nougat, wrapped in paper.

Nicole Dunphy, the woman behind the Limerick-based company says, “A love of cheap flights led to a discovery that we had to share… artisan food producers make sweet things in a way that has never been changed by time.

“The Pandora Bell philosophy is that a high quality daily treat is a healthier and more satisfying way to enjoy sweet things than a mouthful of artificial flavorings. Confectionery made from honey, eggs, nuts, butter have to be more delicious than sweets manufactured with ingredients that sound more suitable for a laboratory than a kitchen.”

That’s a philosophy we can get behind, and we’re delighted to announce we’ll be offering the full range of Pandora Bell products as part of our 2010 retail collection in our Dingle and Killarney shops.

One thing that’s sure to get people’s attention is their Easter eggs – real, sterilised egg shells filled with chocolate truffles.

It’s taken all my self-discipline not to crack open one of the little eggs right now as  I write this.

Maybe I should, because it might be my last chance. They seem quite reasonably priced, and my guess is we’ll sell out of them well before Easter…

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Bridgestone Food Guide 2010

We have received a box of the new Bridgestone Food Guide for our shops, and John & Sally McKenna’s book is a must for anyone who loves Irish food. I’m not just saying this because we’re still blushing here at the write up of our shops (photo above). This is the most comprehensive list of the best of Irish foods (by a long way), with where to go and what to find in all parts of the country. The work that went into this was clearly immense, and it’s written with love, care and dedication.

I suggest you order it immediately. Better still, hie yourself down to your local bookshop and pick up a copy. From the sound of it, Irish bookshops need all the help they can get.

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